A question for all:

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Coco Rae, Jan 26, 2013.

  1. Coco Rae

    Coco Rae Out Of The Brooder

    Oct 23, 2012
    I was wondering what the starting costs might be.
    I want to get three chickens.
    Anyone have any ideas on how much it will cost to get started??
    Thank you all,
  2. americana-lover

    americana-lover Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 13, 2012
    Sometimes chickens can be quite expensive. The chicks themselves are only like, 3 $ each, but you need to consider the cost for the coop, if youre building one yourself, Id estimate at least 100 $ or more, depending on how big your coop is or if your insulating it. I only have 5 chickens, and I go through about a bail of hay a month ( 5 $ ), newspapers ( 10 $ ) and a bag of feed ( 20 $ ) . I hope I helped! if you get scared of the price, chickens are worth the love they provide you!
  3. AlienChick

    AlienChick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 9, 2010
    Glasgow, KY
    Start-up costs vary with location, types of chickens, types of feed, size and style of coop, etc.

    For instance, you can get a day-old chick for $2-$8 depending on breed and who you get your chick from (hatcheries or feed stores being the cheapest).
    If you buy adult birds, they can run from $10 and up. Sometimes you can find folks on CraigsList needing to get rid of chickens.

    A 50-lb bag of chick starter will run $12-$18 depending on your location. You could pay as high as $35 per bag if you want to feed organic.

    You can build a really cheap coop out of stuff you have laying around and your cost would probably be a roll or two of hardwire which cheaply is $1 per foot (but usually more). I built an 8x12' coop that cost about $2000 to build. Now I build 4x12' pens that cost me about $120 to build with all new materials.

    A bag of shavings for bedding will run about $4.

    You can buy fancy feeders and waterers, too, or just use stuff you have laying around.
    Empty gallon milk/water cartons work great.

    There's really no set cost as far as keeping chickens go.
    It's all a matter of what you want to spend.

    Good luck!

  4. Egghead_Jr

    Egghead_Jr Overrun With Chickens

    Oct 16, 2010
    NEK, VT

    I seem to have lost most of my uploaded photos. The caged tractor part I built for $60 and used a kids plastic playhouse for the coop. Put a latch on door and roosting poles inside. As for brooding the chicks I used a metal shade drywall light with 100W incandescent bulb and pine shavings in a plastic tote. Chicks were 2.50 at local Agway. Feed, chicks, pine shavings and a little tractor was all less than $100 to brood and grow out 6 from chicks to pullets in fall ready to lay.

    Basically initial start up doesn't take much if you don't want to put much into it. Once we realized we were chicken people I built the coop part of above picture for winter (cost of that about $120). Now we grow out chicks in this tractor with the plastic playhouse. The wood coop I have on a 4x4 timber stilt base inside a 10X10 dog kennel for the rooster and hens.

    Initial costs are what you make them and once your hooked on chickens additions/improvements are still what you make of them. I purchased the kennel new for $200. We also purchased an incubator for spring hatches for anther $80. We purchased several dozen of shipped eggs too, $40/doz shipped. Along with our flock of blue rocks hatching we'll be buying some heritage barred rock eggs this spring and if all goes well with those shipped eggs hatching will be building a larger coop and gate door extensions to the kennel to run two adult flocks.
  5. chfite

    chfite Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 7, 2011
    Taylors, SC
    Figure $200 on the cheap side for the coop and run, food and water containers, bedding, chicks, and food.

  6. noahsmom

    noahsmom Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 11, 2013
    North Eastern, Ky
    Tell me how to spend $200 to build a cheap coop/run and all the needed extras!?! How big are we talking and what kinds of materials would you use. I'm interested because we are about to build a run.
    I've now figured around $325 for two 10x10 dog kennels (one bought new the other off from craigslist for around $125) & then around $100 for enough chicken wire to fully fence the thing and have an apron on the bottom OR around $230 for Hardware cloth to do the same thing. Of course then all the littler extra for tying things in & such. So that's just my RUN of a 10'x20' not counting any extras like feeders, waterers, incubators, feed etc,..
    I know you are talking about a much smaller scale because the OP only wants just a few chickens, but I found the $200 post interesting! I think our final limit will be to keep around 15 chickens, but a few will be silkies.

    & Good Luck Coco! If you have things laying around that you think you might be able to use, chances are you can! We have all kinds of things around our new place that I know I can repurpose/reuse and plan to. It can really cut some costs and let you put more $$ towards other things for your chickens.
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2013
  7. Kilsharion

    Kilsharion Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 21, 2013
    My Coop
    My husband and I built two coops (the A frame style that you can find in the coop section here) for only the cost of some hardware (we had some pulls and hinges laying around, so it wasn't bad) and the "cloth". He is the king of finding "recycled" lumber - free lumber listings on Craigslist where people just want someone to haul off an old barn they tore down, or fencing, decking - whatever. Of course, we have a full woodshop, here, so we had the equipment to plane and cut our wood to how we needed it. But - all told, including feed and chicks, two coops, feeders, waterers and the wire ran just just under $175. To add the runs, we had to spend another $56 for the hardware cloth.
  8. spotsplus

    spotsplus Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 29, 2008
    Franklin, MA
    A henhouse will run about $100-$150 for 4-6 hens. Fencing material prices vary depending on what type (chicken wire, plastic, chain link ect). Fencing material is needed for the run. Also depends on how large you want your run. A bag of feed cost $14 (layer pellets). A hen will be $10-$40 depending on breed. You can use all sorts of containers for feed and water or you can buy them each for $5-30 depending on how large and type you want. Bag of shavings is $5.50. Bale of hay is $11. If you buy chicks they are $3-$6 depending on breed. Chick starter is $8 for 25 lbs. Heat lamp is $6 and the heat bulb is $10. Cardboard box for brooding the chicks is about $10. :)

  9. noahsmom

    noahsmom Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 11, 2013
    North Eastern, Ky
    Very helpful tammie :)
  10. chfite

    chfite Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 7, 2011
    Taylors, SC
    This is for 6 chickens. I typically have odds and ends lying around the shop, so if I needed a brick for under the coop leg, I did not need to buy it. It is based upon the Purina Mills plans, free on the internet. I did not include nesting boxes since they won't need them until they start to lay at around 24 weeks of age. The most expensive item on this list, if you cannot find it cheap, are the shingles. New shingles could run $60.00 easily at $30 or so a bundle.

    I see that it is not $200, but it is close.

    4 sheets 7/16 osb 48.00
    12 2 x 4 24.00
    shingles at ReStore 5.00
    100ft roll of fencing 65.00
    staples 6.00
    mismatched paint 5.00
    5 8' fence posts 20.00
    5 gal bucket 1.00
    nipples 4.00
    pvc pipe lying around
    feeder built from scrap
    hardware (hinges, etc) 15.00
    50 lb feed 15.00
    6 chicks 12.00
    50 feet 2 foot chicken wire 10.00
    J clips on hand
    pine shavings 7.00
    Nails and screws on hand
    Total 237.00


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